POL 4255: Comparative Real Time Political Analysis: Marxist versus Liberal Perspectives

3 CreditsGlobal PerspectivesHistorical Perspectives

Karl Marx and Frederick Engels had better democratic credentials than Alexis de Tocqueville and John Stuart Mill. Vladimir Lenin, too, had better democratic credentials than Max Weber and Woodrow Wilson. That’s the provocative argument of this course. Performing what it calls “comparative real-time political analysis,” it presents convincing evidence to sustain both claims. When the two sets of protagonists are compared and contrasted in how they read and responded to big political events in motion, in real-time, the Marxists, it contends, proved to be better democrats than the Liberals. Real-time analysis argues that responding to and making decisions about events in motion is the real test of political perspective and theory; on Monday morning, we can all look smart. The writings and actions of all seven protagonists are the primary course materials—reading them in their own words. The European Spring of 1848, the United States Civil War, the 1905 Russian Revolution and, the 1917 Russian Revolution and end of World War I, all consequential in the democratic quest, are the main scenarios the course employs to test its claims. The findings, course participants will learn, challenge assumed political wisdom like never before. Employing the lessons of the comparisons to trying to make sense of current politics—given the unprecedented moment in which we find ourselves—is the other goal of the course.

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B+ Average (3.267)Most Common: A (25%)

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